Ex-nuisance presidential candidate linked to NAIA-3 bomb attempt

By , on September 3, 2014

NAIA Terminal 3 (Wikipedia photo)
NAIA Terminal 3 (Wikipedia photo)

MANILA — A past nuisance presidential candidate has been alleged to be behind the attempt to detonate explosives on Tuesday at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3, according to a highly placed intelligence source.

Lawyer Ely Pamatong was identified by the source primarily because of his link with the four arrested suspects, especially with Grandeur Guerrero, a military reservist.

According to the source, Guerrero has been posing as the “chief of staff” of Pamatong. The latter is a self-proclaimed “commander-in-chief” of the USA Freedom Fighters of the East (USAFFE).

The members of Pamatong’s USAFFE is made up of a dozen members who are all described as “attention seekers.” The source added the said group was formed only in July.

“While (Pamatong’s group) can cause harm because people can still get injured, the quality of their group is questionable. They are mere attention seekers,” the source said.

Meanwhile, the Palace said that they are still waiting for the results of the investigation regarding the recent bombing attempt.

“What we want to say is at present, there is no grave threat because of this incident. The President and the government think that any harm that this wanted to bring has been stopped. The implication of what happened yesterday (Monday, Sept. 1) is being studied thoroughly,” Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said in a press briefing.

He added that the “government would like to be in a constant state of vigilance, alertness, and readiness because government is ultimately responsible for the safety and well-being of its citizens.”

“And that is why even if there have been no serious consequences as a result of what has been uncovered, we want to forestall or to impede any future attempt that might threaten the stability and peace and order of our land and communities,” he said.

He said nothing about the investigation of the Department of Justice (DOJ) regarding the connection of Guerrero’s group.

The source said that the group usually met at NAIA terminal, and that the airport was not a primary target of theirs. Also, the source added that the group planned to “attack” the Army Headquarters in Fort Bonifacio and V. Luna Medical Center.

Regarding the improvised device, according to the source, these are hardly deadly but it could have hurt people.